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Bermuda duo drop down leaderboard

Local sailors Tim Patton and Mark Watson lost precious ground on the leaderboard on the penultimate day of the Etchells World Championship 2012 in Sydney, Australia yesterday.

Provisional results showed Patton slipping from 39th to 42nd and Watson from 43rd to 45th.

Bermuda Sailing Association (BSA) president Patton posted finishes of 58th and 28th in yesterday’s two races, that were contested in light and shifty breezes off Manly Circle.

Royal Bermuda Yacht Club (RBYC) skipper and Argo Group CEO Watson finished 54th and 25th respectively.

Patton, who is making his 24th appearance at the Etchells World Championship this year, endured mixed fortunes for the second straight day in Sydney yesterday.

“In the first race we got caught up in traffic on the first leg and then struggled,” he said. “It is very hard to come back from a deep position in light air.”

Patton’s fortunes eventually took a turn for the better in the second race which saw him record his second best finish in the 74-boat fleet Down Under this week.

“Second race was much better, we held our lane off the start,” he said. “Although we broke the main sheet traveller during a tack and had to fix it, we were still in the top half of the fleet. We then got back to 28.

“It was another mixed day, but we are having some great moments on the racetrack where the legs tend to be 2.5 miles long.”

Patton and Watson will both be looking to finish the regatta with a bang during today’s ninth and final race of the Etchells World Championship 2012 being hosted by Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron.

“Regardless of what happens tomorrow (today) it has been a great learning experience,” Patton said. “This is a world class level of racing and it’s something that we continue to compete at a good level on the world stage (coming) from a very small place.”

Aussies Tom King, Graeme Taylor and John Bertrand currently occupy the top three spots on the leader board heading into the final race.

Bertrand rose to fame after guiding Australia II to victory in the 1983 Americas Cup that put an end to 132 years of American dominance in the pinnacle of match racing.

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Published February 25, 2012 at 8:16 am (Updated February 25, 2012 at 8:15 am)

Bermuda duo drop down leaderboard

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